Springfield, Mass. - October 21, 2017 - The Springfield College football team racked up 674 yards of total offense as it rolled past visiting Catholic, 68-20, in New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) play on a Homecoming Saturday afternoon at Stagg Field.
Facing each other for the first-time ever, Springfield improved to 8-0, 5-0 in conference play, while Catholic dropped to 3-4, 1-3. Springfield, which was ranked 22nd this week in the AFCA Division III National Coaches Poll and 23rd in the D3football.com Poll, has now rattled off eight-straight wins to start the season for the first time since 2003.
The Pride's rushing attack, which entered the game as the most potent in all of college football, was unstoppable and churned out 625 yards, averaging 9.6 yards per carry, en route to 27 of Springfield's 29 first downs. Springfield scored touchdowns on its first 10 possessions and put up 48 points in the first half. Jordan Wilcox (Saratoga Springs, N.Y.) continued to shine as the fullback delivered 212 yards and three scores on just 13 first-half carries. Quarterback Jake Eglintine (Ballston Spa, N.Y.) added 134 yards and two scores on 13 carries, while Chad Shade (Pittsfield, Mass.) needed just three carries to total 106 yards and two scores.
Defensively, Luke Jimenez (Waldwick, N.Y.) had a team-high seven stops to go along with a pick, while Josh Corporan (Lincoln Park, N.J.) tallied six tackles, an interception, and a forced fumble. Nick Giorgio (Cumberland, R.I.) added three tackles for loss, including 1.5 sacks.
Catholic's Alejandro Ros went 15-for-25 for 153 yards, two scores, and two interceptions, while Pedro Garcia rushed for 48 yards. Nick Della Jacono had a game-high 11 stops, and Nick Warner chipped in nine stops. The Cardinals finished the game with 323 yards of total offense, including 209 through the air.
Wilcox punched in the game's first score just 58 seconds into the contest as he needed just three carries to produced 68 yards on the game's opening drive. After forcing a turnover on downs, Hunter Belzo (Middletown, Conn.) took a pitch down the right sideline for a 10-yard score, capping off a 10-play, 68-yard drive with 5:38 left in the quarter. Following Jimenez's interception which gave the Pride the ball at the Catholic 48, Eglintine added the Pride's third score of the quarter on an 18-yard run with 2:35 on the clock.
Springfield recorded 239 rushing yards in the second quarter and scored four more touchdowns to make it 48-0 with 1:32 remaining. Wilcox plunged in for a one-yard score 1:51 into the stanza before Ishmael Glasco (Westfield, N.J.) ran 12 yards up the gut for a score at the 9:46 mark. Eglintine added his second of the game on a 31-yard score after a Corporan interception, and thanks to an AJ Smith (Rahway, N.J.) fumble recovery, Wilcox powered his way through multiple Catholic defenders for a highlight-reel 35-yard score with 1:32 to play. Catholic responded with their first score of the game with 21 seconds remaining on a four-yard toss from Ros to Blake Gomez.
The Cardinals scored first in the second half, using a 12-play, 71-yard drive the ate up over six minutes off the clock and was capped off by a 23-yard strike from Ros to Onani Moore. On the ensuing drive, Catholic got a heavy dose of Joshua Thomas (Saratoga Springs, N.Y.), as the fullback carried the ball seven-straight times before finding the end zone from a yard out with 3:39 remaining.
Just 50 seconds into the fourth, Shade broke free for a 46 yards score, and just 2:03 later, the sophomore quarterback eluded several would-be tacklers before busting free down the left sideline for a 56-yard touchdown to make it 68-14 with 12:07 remaining. Catholic would complete the scoring with a 33-yard heave with no time remaining on the clock, as Gomez hauled in the score from Jorge Pola.
The Pride will now take advantage of its upcoming bye week before hitting the road for a contest at Maine Maritime starting at 12 pm on November 4.
Photo by Roy Chambers